Women Get Hotter Than Men

A man and woman kissing

..or, more accurately, women’s brain activity is more pronounced than that of men during sexual arousal. A study published in The Journal of Sexual Medicine by Mayte Parada, Marina Gérard, Kevin Larcher, Alain Dagher, and Yitzchak M. Binik showed that women’s neurological activity was more extensive than men’s when aroused by erotic stimulus. The researchers asked 20 men and 20 women to watch humorous movie clips and erotic movie clips, and compared their responses.

The study measured genital temperature by using infrared thermal imaging, while participants evaluated their arousal by answering questions about liking the movies and wanting sexual stimulation. At the same time they measured brain activity using functional magnetic resonance imaging. Women in the study showed stronger brain-genital relation compared with men in more than one region of the brain.

The sample size of 40 people in this study is relatively small. Prior studies of this kind focused on men, so are hard to compare. Further, this study only tested heterosexual men and women, leaving questions of gender identity and sexual orientation open for evaluation. More research will be needed to determine whether the results are repeatable and consistent. Still, the information is a promising insight into women’s arousal and possibly helpful for sexual dysfunction. It also may help explain why more women than men appear to identify as sapiosexual; that is, aroused by intelligence.

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